December 6, 2023

The Queens County Citizen

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Lifting restrictions can lead to quarantine chaos

Lifting restrictions can lead to quarantine chaos

(Washington) The number of visitors entering Canada has steadily increased, and travel restrictions for fully vaccinated people have begun to ease, but much confusion remains over who can be exempted from the blockade.

James McCarten
The Canadian Press

Denise Vinett, vice president of the Branch, said that despite all efforts by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to publicize its needs, half of those seeking exemption from quarantine had to be repulsed. CBSA Travelers General.

“It’s a question of people who don’t understand the rules,” he explained in an interview.

Only Canadian citizens, permanent residents and eligible foreign nationals who have received the last dose of the vaccine approved by Health Canada (Pfizer-BioMtech, Moderna, Oxford-AstraZeneca or Johnson & Johnson) for at least two weeks are exempt from detention.

Canada has exemptions for foreign nationals who are immediate family members of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, as well as a process for extended family members and international students to do so. Admission Request.

Of those who were denied exemption last week, most received only one dose of the two-dose vaccine, did not wait 14 days after their last injection, or received a vaccine that was not licensed for use in Canada, Vinett said.

He said CBSA was keen to help people understand what has changed and what has not, to avoid excessive delays or traffic jams at border checkposts.

Travelers are required to use the ArriveCAN application or online portal to submit their vaccination information and negative COVID-19 test results that do not take more than three days before departure. The app is available through Apple or Android or online at the federal government website. Travelers must use the latest version of the app, which is updated when the rules change.

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Increase in ridership

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) said inbound traffic increased by 25% last week after the lifting of quarantine rules for some passengers last Monday.

However, except for busy border crossings such as Windsor-Detroit, Fort Erie in Ontario and the Pacific Highway in British Columbia, Mr Vinet noted that the waiting time is up to 45 minutes.

“We urge people to be patient if they find that there are long queues at the border,” Vinett warned. This is our first test, especially in a land border environment. ”

The impatient United States

The question of when the sanctions will be relaxed remains unanswered.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Thursday that he did not think Canada was in danger of exiting the crisis by opening the border too early. He said easing restrictions on non-Canadian fully vaccinated travelers was the next step, but did not say when that would happen.

South of the border, Canadians are running out of patience to return visitors.

Senator Majority Leader Democrat Chuck Schumer, who represents the border state of New York, urged the two countries to work out a mutual plan to reopen the border as soon as possible. When there is no agreement, he is ready for the United States to take arbitrary action.

“If a deal is not found […], The United States will have to do two things, “Schumer said in a statement last week,” expand the definition of travel required to include vaccinated Canadian citizens for family, real estate, educational, medical or business purposes (to the United States) and unilaterally open the northern border to vaccinated Canadians “.

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